Nadal motors past Veic
Rafael Nadal fired a statement of intent to his rivals as he blazed into the fourth round of the French Open with a dominant victory over Croatia's Antonio Veic.
Having been taken to five sets by John Isner in his opening match, Nadal's form was questioned when he was pushed hard by fellow Spaniard Pablo Andujar in the second round. But Nadal looked to be approaching his imperious best as the five-time Roland Garros champion blazed to a 6-1 6-3 6-0 victory on Court Phillipe Chatrier.
The top seed burst out of the blocks and stormed to a 4-0 lead in the opening set to lay down a marker to the world No. 227. However, an inconsistent forehand gave Veic a sniff in the second, and although Nadal's superior shot making saw him clinch the set with relative ease, it was far from convincing from the top seed, who was broken twice.
By this time Veic was flagging, and Nadal motored through the third set for his most comfortable victory yet. It may not have been flawless tennis, but it was clinical from the Spaniard, who converted nine of ten break point opportunities.
Nadal will now meet another Spaniard or another Croat in the last-16, with the top seed drawn to play the winner of the match between Fernando Verdasco and Ivan Ljubicic.